My Tranformation From A Stubborn Skeptic Into A Fan Of Alia Bhatt
I’ll be honest. When I saw Alia Bhatt in Student of the Year, I wasn’t convinced. I remember feeling that Bollywood has got yet another pretty face, with non-existent acting chops. Granted, she didn’t exactly have an author backed role, with little scope for emoting. But I still did not find her even remotely interesting.
Cut to 2017, and I am an Alia Bhatt fan. How did this change come about? Well, let’s take a closer look at her career.
So, after Student of the Year, we didn’t see her in any other movie, for more than a year. And then she returned to the scene with Highway (2014). This Imtiaz Ali road film was a coming-of-age of sorts for Bhatt, who surprised everyone with her flawless portrayal of a girl who finds freedom in captivity. What impressed me more than her performance, was her decision to actually do this film. Not many star kids would’ve picked Highway as just their second film, that too opposite Randeep Hooda, who is a dependable performer but not exactly a star. Bhatt won my respect at that time, along with the adulation of the people.
In 2014, she also did 2 States, and Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania, both of which were runaway successes at the box office. Not only this, but she also outperformed her male co-actors in both the aforementioned films. Alia Bhatt had well and truly arrived by this point.
Around the same time, she was a part of the sketch video ‘Genius of the Year’, with the comedy group AIB. The video poked fun at her perceived lack of general knowledge. This was clearly a PR stunt gone right- she became more likeable with this video. She came across as funny, and sporting enough to take a joke.
But what goes up, must go down. Alia Bhatt did not exactly go down, but 2015 was not too kind to her. She had only one release, Shaandaar, which sank without a trace. Forgettable year all around.
Then came 2016, and renewed success for Ms. Bhatt. Her year began with Kapoor and Sons, and even though she played a supporting character, her effervescence in the role was refreshing. And then came Udta Punjab. Her role as the nameless Bihari immigrant who gets embroiled in physical and mental abuse, proved her mettle as an actress. In a film full of outstanding actors, she managed to steal the show. This was indication enough of how far Alia Bhatt the performer had come. She would go on to win the Filmfare Award for this film. Before 2016 could wrap up, however, she also did Dear Zindagi– which turned out to be another feather in her cap. She was widely appreciated as she played a young, independent girl battling depression.
Even 2017 started off with a bang for her, as Badrinath Ki Dulhania has been received well by the audiences. Now, as she turns 24, she is one of the legitimate young achievers of our generation. She has proved by virtue of her hard work, and dedication that she is more than just a pretty face, or a star kid. She is now a star; a box office draw.
Now, Student of Year seems like a blip on the radar, doesn’t it.
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